It’s time to tell the story of NBC’s A to Z (with theÂ help of the official NBC synopsis for this new series).
This fall, we give the new NBC Rom Com the cutest show on TV award. It stars Ben Feldman (he was one of Mindy Lahiri’s boyfriends on The Mindy Project) and Cristin Milioti (she’s the “mother” from How I Met Your Mother) and it was created by Ben Queen, who once upon a time, helped bringÂ a FOX series calledÂ Drive to the masses (which starred Nathan Fillion pre-Castle). Parks and Rec alum Rashida Jones is also one of the executive producers.
According to NBC, A to Z tells the story of Andrew and Zelda â€” a pair that almost wasnâ€™t â€” and all that happened from the day they met.
Andrew Lofland, while a guyâ€™s guy, has always been a secret romanticâ€¦ not above crooning to Celine Dion while driving to work, with dreams of finding â€œthe one.â€ He imagines her to be just like that shimmering beauty he spotted that night in that silver dress at that concert two years ago.
Zelda Vasco is a no-nonsense lawyer who has strong feelings about being her own person and prefers the control of online dating. However, when a computer glitch sends her a total mismatch, sheâ€™s asked to come in for an interview at Wallflower Online Dating, the agency where Andrew works.
Andrew and Zelda meet for the first time and despite their differences, sparks fly. She thinks itâ€™s chance. He thinks itâ€™s fate. After all, heâ€™s convinced sheâ€™s the shimmering girl in the silver dress. Is it true love forever or just a detour in destiny?Â Andrew and Zelda will date for eight months, three weeks, five days and one hour. This program is a comprehensive account of their relationship â€“ from A to Z.
At an event celebrating the show’s early digital premiere, the creatorÂ explained the purpose of the eight months, three weeks, five days and one hour timeÂ crunch.
Ben Queen: The narrator says that they’ve been dating for that long. That really organizes the first season of the show. So, by the end of the first season, those months will have gone by…At the end of the season, there’s going to be a big change in the relationship one way or another. And I like that when people watch it they’reÂ gonna be like, are they going to break up or are they going to get married? I can promise something very cool. I like the idea of putting a fun ticking clock on it.
One of the most important aspects of this show is C for Chemistry. If you’ve seen the pilot you know that Milioti and Feldman have no problem in that department. The actors and producers addressed this topic at the Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour.
Ben Feldman:Â Cristin had her job. She was on it, and they needed to bring in a guy that just wasn’t going to screw up opposite her.
Cristin Milioti:Â I think that chemistry, both as people and as actors, it’s either there or not. You can put two people together in a show and put two people together on set and hope for the best and light it in the right way, but I would say that you can tell when it’s there, and it’s from the second you meet someone.
Ben Queen:Â When they got together in the room to actually do the network test, they had literally met each other an hour before, and it was real electric. Â You could see it. Â There was real genuine chemistry between these two that I’d been told that this thing existed, and it’s real.
We love the supporting cast for A to Z. What we really liked to hear is that they are going to have their own storylines in addition to contributing to the drama and the comedy of the show’s main relationship. For us, it’s not enough to just be the best friend that listens to all the problems. We’d like to see all the characters get their own time to shine.
While at work, Andrew must navigate around Lydia, aka â€œBig Bird,” his boss and general manager at Wallflower, who has a way of making everyone in the office uncomfortable. Hardly the romantic, she believes her job is not helping people find true love, but rather keeping them paying their monthly membership fee.
One of the funniest moments in the pilot comes courtesy of Christina Kirk‘s bitchy (and hilarious) boss. We can’t wait to see what they have in store for the character. At the TCAs, the actress talked about playing Lydia.
Christina Kirk:Â It’s fun for me to indulge this extreme character. Â My husband would be like, “I don’t think you’re actually that different from this character.” Â I feel I’m very different from this character, so it’s fun to play that and explore that.
Stu is Andrewâ€™s loyal friend, colleague and roommate. Intense and eccentric, Stu has no qualms offering up his misplaced insights and doling out unsolicited advice.
Henry Zebrowski‘s Stu has the capacity toÂ be quite obnoxious. But it’s always in a funny and endearing way. In the pilot, it’s his lies that get him in trouble when it comes to his love life. That aspect was interesting to us so we’re confident he’ll be more than just the BBF. BBF = Bearded Best Friend.
Henry Zebrowski:Â Powerful beards create a mystery. You don’t know what the chin looks like. I think I’ve auditioned for every part that involves having the body being described as a duffle bag that exists, so this was great that this worked, because it said ‘handsome’ in the character description, so I felt flattered.
All in all, Zebrowski feels his character has a stake in Andrew and Zelda getting together.
Henry: I think I’m just kinda hoping that Andrew will move out of the house if he finds love and I’ll get the house by myself.
Meanwhile, Stephie is Zeldaâ€™s best friend, roommate and colleague at the law firm where Zelda works. A fool for love, she has a wedding Pinterest page, even though she has never been engaged.
Love that Lenora Crichlow is on the series. Genre fans will know her from playing Annie on Being Human (the UK version). She was recently in the short-lived ABC series, Back in the Game.
Lenora Crichlow: I think Stephie’s role for Zelda is to keep her enthusiastic, as well, and to not give up.Â I think Stephie is much more pro love, and whenever Zelda may be finding it a bit tough, I think Stephie is her encouragement.Â She’s very enthusiastic about dating and throwing herself down and giving it everything.Â So I think she balances out the cynic, but then she’s very self-absorbed, so she’s kind of just in her own world anyway.
Photo Credit for both Images:Â Photo Credit: Chris Haston/NBC
Also working at Wallflower are Lora (Hong Chau) and Dinesh (Parvesh Cheena), two programmers whose work skills have been known to come in quite handy when Andrew needs a favor.
You guys might not be aware that there is another character on this show. And that’s the set for Wallflower, the dating service where Andrew, Stu and Lydia work. It’s quite beautiful. We got a chance to visit the set and snapped photos of the wall of success, Andrew’s desk and the “view” from the office building:
Photo Credit for all three Images: TV Goodness
Fun Fact: Sons of Anarchy and Married with Children star, Katey Sagal, provides the voice of the narrator. The series premiere of A to Z is tonight @ 9:30/8:30c on NBC.
A to Z Official Trailer
A to Z clip
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